After a long hike up to the Passo San Gottardo, you may appreciate the easy cruising to be found at the outset of this segment. It's easy cruising for six miles, a full 1000 m (3200 ft) above the valley floor. You'll first enjoy commanding views of the old and new pass roads from Airolo up to the pass. When you turn the corner at the highest point around 2.5 miles, the whole val Ticino (Valley), which gives the province its name, opens up to you. You can probably see 20 miles down the valley and mountain peaks well beyond that.
At mile six, you start a crazy mile where you descend 300 m (1000 ft). The descent continues for another four miles (about 600 m; 2000 ft) with only two short climbs to break it up. You'll pass through a few small mountain hamlets in this section (Bolla and Pautan).
Once you reach Pautan, the trail follows the Torrente la Garegna (Creek) for about a mile. After that, the trail passes alternately through pasture and heavy forest until the outskirts of Airolo.
The route ends at Airolo train station which can take you back to wherever you started, or there are many hotels and restaurants in town.
Shared By: Lost Justpastnowhere